Antwerp at a Glance
Moving to Antwerp123RF
Antwerp's impressive town hall is at the heart of the old city.
Moving to Antwerp will put you in a city which is very well used to multiculturalism. After the Second World War, the city saw an influx of Spanish and Moroccan immigrants. Today, these populations constitute the second largest groups after the Dutch. French and Germans are also numerously represented in the city, followed by expats of British, American, and Israeli nationalities. Wherever you come from, moving to Antwerp should not be so daunting after recognizing the number of foreign communities already in the city!
Moving to Antwerp: Visa Requirements
The first things any expat has to think about when relocating are the administrative issues of the change. How easy moving to Antwerp is for you will depend largely on whether or not you are an EU/EEA citizen. If you are, then visas should not be difficult to obtain. If you are a non-EU citizen, things might get slightly more complicated before moving to Antwerp is possible for you.
You will need to check, firstly, whether your country has a visa waiver agreement with Belgium. In order to do so, you should inquire at the Belgian embassy or consulate nearest to you in your country of residence. The Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation has a search engine for Belgian missions abroad on their website.
To accomplish moving to Antwerp, you will then need to apply for either a long term or a short term visa, depending on the length of your stay in Belgium. These applications must be sent to your nearest Belgian mission before you set about moving to Antwerp. All of the official information required for visas for Belgium can be found on the Belgian Foreign Affairs website.
Moving to Antwerp: Different Visas
Long Term Visa
There are different visas available for people moving to Antwerp, depending on their reason for moving to the city. No matter which visa you need, you will have to pay an administrative fee of €180. If you are moving to Antwerp for business or work reasons, you will have to choose from the following visas:
For full details of all of these visa types, please see our moving to Brussels pages.
This visa is applicable if you are moving to Antwerp for a limited amount of time (90 days), for any reason, and you are a third-state national. A Schengen visa will cost you €60, and will take three to four weeks to process. If you are moving to Antwerp for business, and have applied for a Schengen visa, you will also need a letter of invitation from a Belgian company, to verify the purpose of your stay.
Moving to Antwerp: Registering as a Resident
If you are moving to Antwerp for more than three months, you must register with your local municipal authority within eight days of your arrival. Bring a proof of residence (either a rental agreement or bank details) with you when you register. To confirm your home address, a police officer will make a visit. After this, you will receive your residence permit, along with a foreign resident’s identity card.
An important piece of info for expats moving to Antwerp: Belgium is currently in the process of updating its residence cards. The new electronic card will contain biometric data on a chip, and will serve as a certificate of inscription, a residence permit and an identity card. After receiving this, you will have successfully completed moving to Antwerp.